Red Sox Chick/Toeing the Rubber

Because you always need a backup plan

Goodbye Minnesota

Afternoon at Fenway (Taken by me in 2010)

Apparently my happiness on Monday bled into Tuesday and Wednesday made me forget to write a post.  (Not really…I won’t lie, I really enjoyed having the giant happy face on the blog.  Every time I logged on and saw it and made me smile so I left it there.  I kind of need the boost these days!)

I missed the game last night (“I wouldn’t say I’ve been *missing* it, Bob.”) so my good, baseball-related, mood is still in tact.  Denial is wonderful. (Although I do wonder if Tito has something against Jon Lester that he left him hanging so. 115 pitches into the 8th inning was just head shaking.)  I also understand that one loss, the way this team has been playing, is not a big deal, though my non baseball-related mood could have used the boost of a sweep.

The Red Sox are headed to Seattle for the weekend.  Two 10pm and then a 4pm game for the weekend.  While this works wonderfully for my weekend plan-making, I always miss there being Red Sox baseball on a Saturday afternoon.  Once the Sox get back to Boston, next week, we get a day/night doubleheader on Tuesday (starting with a 1:oopm game)  because of a makeup game with the Rays and then a 1:35pm Wednesday game so since I’m getting two weekday afternoon games next week, I can’t complain too much about the 10pm games this weekend.

Enjoy the off-day people.

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August 11, 2011 Posted by | 2011 | , | Leave a comment

I Won’t Rest

My post-Lenten promise will be to give Bobby Jenks a break and not be so negative about him...after this post! (Photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor and used with permission)

Friend of the blog (and me!) John in the comments from yesterday’s post:

Can’t remember if Bobby Jenks was a bargain but I sure hope he was.

I found it amusing that he mentioned this because last night I realized that Bobby Jenks has quickly become this year’s player that I have a (relatively) irrational dislike toward. So I have that to keep me warm.

Regardless of Jenks’ ability to drive me crazy even if he pitches well (which he didn’t last night) watching that game from start to finish was mostly fun and definitely exciting.  My favorite bits of the night were Jed Lowrie still hitting the ball and Jonathan Papelbon recording his third save in as many games.  Papelbon was on last night and was just a ton of fun to watch, wasn’t he?

I know I promised a giveaway yesterday and then bailed and my apologies for not explaining it last night.  A few good Red Sox fans brought it to my attention that holding a giveaway on not only a holiday weekend but ANY weekend might be creating a smaller window of opportunity for regular readers of the blog.  So I’m switching the day and WEDNESDAYS will be giveaway day (when I have something to give away…which I do this week!).  And this week, in addition to Wednesday being giveaway day, it’ll also be the first Live Chat of 2011.  I’ll keep you all updated but right now Wednesdays look like the solid choice.

Kind of grateful for the 9:05 game tonight as today holds a lot in store unrelated to baseball.  I hope it isn’t as gray and chilly out where you are as it is where I am.  Have a great Saturday, folks!

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Random stats that shouldn’t annoy me as much as they do because I know it’s a ‘small sample size’ and you can dig out other stats that better judge a pitcher in the long run:  In 9 games Bobby Jenks has a 7.36 ERA and has given up 7 runs in 7.1 innings while opposing batters are hitting .290 against him.  I certainly don’t blame Jenks for the early struggles of the Red Sox but it sure frustrates me to watch him pitch right now.

Blog suggestion for the day:  The Red Sox have “We Won’t Rest” as their slogan on their official website but we have been inundated with the “We’re all in” commercials as well.  The White Sox have “All In” as their slogan on their official website.  All the other teams have original slogans or none at all and it annoyed me that box Sox teams were stuck with sharing (even if it isn’t reflected online).  Earlier this year Jere at A Red Sox Fan from Pinstripe Territory covered, as he does every year, all the slogans on all the MLB sites .  It’s an interesting read that he updates as the slogans change.  (“This is Twins Territory” “This is Reds Country“…MLB really needs folks with new ideas.  There are only 30 teams, it can’t be that difficult to come up with unique slogans for each one.)

April 23, 2011 Posted by | 2011, Featured | , , , , , , | 6 Comments

Stop the pain

Surprising no one, the Yankees swept the Twins.  I know the Yankees are a good team but the Twins were supposed to be a good team as well.  I hate when teams like the Twins prove those people right who believe the deeds of the past will always repeat themselves.  The Twins always roll over for the Yankees…I heard this over and over again before this series ended.  I don’t believe in “always”.  New teams, new situations, different results are entirely possible.  So the Twins showing the baseball world that, indeed, they do intend to continue to roll over for the Yankees is a bit depressing.

The Rays on their way to bringing their DS to a fifth game annoys me as well.  I mean, if the Rangers either pull off a comeback today or pound the Rays in game five in Saint Pete, that’ll be swell.  But if we are subjected to watching the Rays v the Yankees in the ALCS, there’s a very good possibility you all will be watching without me.  As they say, I’m going to have to root for the meteor.

October 10, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , | Leave a comment

Briefly

I find a delightful irony in the fact that the one playoff series I was on the fence about which team I wanted to win is turning out to be the most interesting series of the four so far.

With all due respect to Roy Halladay’s no-hitter, which was fabulous, having three teams n the division series up 2-0 is, in a word, boring.  (Another word is frustrating, but I’ll leave that for now.)  So the Braves shaking things up last night and making them interesting at least gives me one series to look forward to.

Today both the Yankees and the Rangers have an opportunity to sweep their respective series.  I want the Rangers to sweep but I want the Twins to remember that they don’t HAVE to suck against the Yankees.  Kick it into gear, Minnesota.  You’re embarrassing yourselves.

And remember:  No matter how many times they play The Imperial March for their opponents, the Yankees will always be the bad guys.  We can’t let the bad guys win again.

October 9, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Pick One?

Good luck, Javi!  Photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor/sittingstill.smugmug.com and used with permission.

Good luck, Javi! Photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor/sittingstill.smugmug.com and used with permission.

Still processing that the season for the Sox has ended.  Watching “Four Days in October” last night helped and hearing Don Orsillo calling the Rangers/Rays game does too.

Given that I don’t really dislike any of the teams in the playoffs except for one, for the most part I’m in the “Anyone but the Yankees” camp.  There are three games on television today, though, so I might as well make some picks (idea kind of lifted from Metsgrrl who mapped out her choices over at her blog).  I’m only picking by series, though, so here’s what I’d like to happen in the Division Series.

Texas Rangers v Tampa Bay Rays:  I’m torn.  I despise the cowbells which means I’m not fond of most Rays fans (not all, though.  I know a few I consider good fans and part of me is happy for them) so every Rays loss means we’re closer to no more freaking cowbells until April 2011.  That I can get behind.  (Also, I will always dislike James Shields for many reasons but mostly his dumbass nickname.  Once the Rays are out of it, no one will be mentioning “Big Game” James.  Who could root against that?)  The only thing I have against the Rangers is Josh Hamilton.  I don’t want to hear what a wonderful story he has for the next month.  Any time someone starts talking about Josh Hamilton and his issues, it makes me want to start using drugs.  That’s probably not what he had in mind when he shared his story, huh?  I’m going with the Rangers.  Cliff Lee making his way through the playoffs makes me happy.  I won’t be devastated if the Rays win, but if the baseball gods love us even a little than they will spare us the idiocy that is adults ringing cowbells.

Cincinnati Reds v Philadelphia Phillies:  I don’t hate the Phillies but I’m really just sick of them.  The only things that make me not want to root for the Reds are Dusty Brown and Jonny Gomes.  If Gomes pulls something in his first appearance and can’t play the rest of the post-season, I’ll be a happy gal.  I’m rooting for the Reds. Gomes and Baker aside, I like their fan base and I think a fan base as loyal as theirs should get to enjoy more than one round of the playoffs.  It doesn’t hurt that Bronson Arroyo is with the Reds, not at all.  Okay, who am I kidding?  I want Bronson to get another ring.  I do.  I do.  I do. I do.  There, I said it.

New York Yankees v Minnesota Twins: I’m all about the Yankees.  (Man, I couldn’t even type that with a straight face!)  I don’t just want the Twins to beat the Yankees, I want Joe Girardi to get thrown out of every game.  I want Derek Jeter to throw his shoulder out while he’s fist pumping.  I want Slappy to tear a few muscles in the groin area.  I want CC Sabathia, Phil Hughes and Andy Pettitte to all give up over ten hits and ten runs.  I want Mark Teixeira to bat .000 and Nick Swisher to have 17 errors.  I WANT THE TWINS TO DESTROY THE YANKEES!  That is all.

Atlanta Braves v San Francisco Giants:  Honestly?  I couldn’t care less.  There are ex-Sox on the Braves (Lowe, Gonzalez, Wagner, Hinske, heck even Ross) AND on the Giants (Lopez, Ramirez, Renteria, Sanchez), so I could develop a fondness for either team.  Do I have to pick one?  Let’s see, Tomahawk Chop versus panda hats…I’m going to have to give this one to San Francisco. Plus, seeing Javier Lopez in the post season makes me unreasonably happy.  Not exactly a good rationale for choosing the Giants but there you have it.

I’m watching the Rangers take David Price for five runs in five innings so far.  I hope every game today has a similar scenario!

October 6, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Last night in baseball

Photo courtesy of Kelly O'Connor/sittingstill.net and used with permission.

Photo of Victor Martinez courtesy of Kelly O'Connor/sittingstill.net and used with permission.

Found in my Twitter feed:

The Atlanta Braves beat Stephen Strasburg and the Washington Nationals 5-0 (with Strasburg giving up four runs on six hits in six innings, three of those runs earned, yet he also struck out seven).  According to many on Twitter, the Braves fans started chanting “Over-rated”.  When I read that, I must admit to laughing out loud.  You have to think that they were beat to death with “expect the team to lose to the mighty Strasburg” crap ever since the day someone figured out he’d be pitching at Turner Field.  Why not have fun with it?  He lost to their team after being deemed the best pitcher baseball has ever seen.  Let him know that, in spite of MLB’s trying to make the world Strasburg fans, not everyone wants him to win – especially when he’s pitching against their team.  I don’t believe he’s over-rated but I sure do believe we’re being saturated with Strasburg publicity right now and the “over-rated” chant will hit every ballpark he visits if he doesn’t with the game and strike out at least 10 each in each appearance.  This isn’t his fault, this is the fault of MLB and every writer and broadcaster who has decided that a Stephen Strasburg start is more important than any other game being played in baseball.  Maybe now we’ll stop being inundated with inning by inning updates on him.

Detroit Tigers’ Joel Zumaya hurt his right elbow last night while pitching against the Minnesota Twins.  According to catcher Gerald Laird, you could hear something pop as he made his pitch to Delmon Young.  MLB has the video here and the look of pain on Zumaya’s face is, well, painful.  Check out the look on Young’s face after he swings.  Whatever happened to Zumaya, his catcher and the guy at bat heard it and there’s no way it’s anything but bad news.  Thinking good thoughts for the 25 year-old who has been plagued by arm injuries in his short career.  In an understandable contrast to how Braves fans treated the opposing pitcher, Twins fans gave Zumaya an ovation as he left the field.

Staying in Minnesota for a moment, Twins fans, I’ve come to find out thanks to Twitter, also do the wave.  Can the “Fenway Park is the only place that still does the wave” talk finally be put to rest?  It isn’t accurate at all.  There are plenty of lame, wave-doing fans all across Major League Baseball and folks need to stop pretending Red Sox fans are some odd breed that still live in the 1980s.

The Red Sox are rumored to be calling up Gustavo Molina from Pawtucket and putting Victor Martinez on the disabled list.  Lots of complaining on Twitter last night because Molina isn’t hitting well in Triple-A.  Folks need to take into consideration that the two best catchers on the PawSox, Mark Wagner and Dusty Brown, are both on the DL right now and Molina will be the back-up catcher to Jason Varitek.  Expecting the Triple-A back up to the back up catcher to come up to the bigs and blow you away is short-sighted and, well, ridiculous.  Molina will do what he’s being brought up to do, be a serviceable backup to Jason Varitek.   The team is in injury trouble right now; do folks expect all stars to be available to fill in?  The injury situation sucks all the way around.  Having starters go down doesn’t always (or usually) give a team the opportunity to fill the gap with the next big name.  This is, unfortunately, something the Sox and their fans are going to have to deal with for a while.

Reports are that Clay Buchholz won’t be going on the DL, Martinez will be and Dustin Pedroia won’t be having surgery.  It’s all still pretty ugly but it still feels to me like it could be worse.  Six weeks without Pedie will hurt the most.  Can’t even try to find a silver lining there.  Hopefully Victor’s hand won’t hurt so much that he won’t be able to rub Adrian Beltre’s head after each home run.

All Star Game voting updates came in yesterday.  I am not upset to see no Red Sox players in the running to be starters.  Given all the injuries this season I am even more dedicated to the idea that I want the team to use the All Star break as a genuine break from the game.  Give them the rest, let the Yankees and Rays do the heavy-lifting for home field advantage.  I have no problem with this.

As I mentioned yesterday, there won’t be a live chat for tonight’s game.  There will be a live chat tomorrow night (Daisuke Matsuzaka v Matt Garza in game two of the two game series against the Rays) and then next week we’ll start back up on Tuesdays again.

Tonight we get John Lackey going up against James Shields.  If ever a game screamed out for a live chat to take the edge off, I realize this is it, so I apologize in advance.  I do, however, have a good feeling about Lackey tonight.  If the Sox can split this series, I’ll be happy but a sweep would make me even happier…so lets work on that, eh, John?

June 29, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Wins. Wins are nice.

Welcome back to the rotation, Wake!  (Photo taken by me in 2005)

Welcome back to the rotation, Wake. (Photo taken by me in 2005)

I really enjoy these mornings when watching “Breakfast with the Sox” is something I go out of my way to do.  (When the Sox lose, I don’t watch the replays, hell I usually don’t even watch the post-game show!)

As an aside before I start bragging on Clay, Based on feedback I’ve been receiving the past few weeks after each live chat, I’m banging around the idea of a message board connected to the blog as a place where folks can talk baseball (or just random daytime talk before games!) and have game day discussions (with a chat room attached as well).  Folks seem a little reticent to use the comments for chatting and some suggestions have come in about having a discussion board to visit.  Not sure what the response would be from the masses, though, so I thought I’d throw the idea out there and see what you all think.  Shoot me an email or leave a note in the comments section and let me know what  you think (emails would be great since then I’d have YOUR email address and could send out invites for the board if folks are so inclined).  What say you, folks?

Continue reading

May 20, 2010 Posted by | 2010 | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

I'm hooked as I can get

AP photo lifted off of Yahoo! Sports and used without any permissions

AP photo lifted off of Yahoo! Sports and used without any permissions

Usually after watching the Red Sox in a playoff game (especially if they’ve won it) my adrenaline is running so high it takes hours for me to come down. So if a game ends around 11pm, I’m awake until about two or three trying to settle down.

This is what happened last night after watching that Twins/Tigers game. While I disagree with Orlando Cabrera about it being the best game he’s played in (hello game 4 of the 2004 ALCS?), I absolutely see why he feels that way (and there are many people, even sports writers, giving him crap for saying it. They asked him about it moments after the end of the game and it was a pretty fabulous game – how could he NOT feel that way? Maybe over time his feelings will change but give the guy a break) – this game was so good I was screaming and jumping around and even got a bit of an adrenaline-fueled headache while it was going on. Lead changes, tie scores, runners being thrown out at the plate. Amazing pitching from guys who had to give their absolute all. Both the Tigers and the Twins left everything out on the field last night (well, let’s hope the Twins didn’t leave EVERYTHING) and, as baseball fans, we couldn’t have asked for anything more.

It was fun and exciting to watch a game like that without a deep-seated choice of winner. Because I truly feel like the Tigers were physically and emotionally demolished going into last night’s game (and I’ll admit, knowing their star player was on his ass drunk between two really important games last weekend annoyed the crap out of me) I didn’t want to see them go up against the Yankees. Although, during the game I kept saying “they aren’t playing like a team on their last legs” so what the hell do I know? But because I had that feeling in me, I was rooting for the Twins. (That and the fact that I have more friends who are Twins fans than Tigers fans!) Regardless of which team won, I was enjoying the game. I thought the Twins winning would make me enjoy it more (and maybe it did just a tad) but I also felt terrible for the Tigers who really gave it their all. The visual of Fernando Rodney walking off the field and into the dugout is a haunting one I don’t wish on any fan base. (Okay, maybe ONE.)

Today is the beginning of baseball nirvana. I’m not in the office today so I get to sit in front of my television from 2:30 ET through whenever and watch the Rockies/Phillies then the Twins/Yankees and then the Cardinals/Dodgers. It’s a bit ridiculous how much I’m looking forward to this.

October 7, 2009 Posted by | 2009 | , , | 4 Comments

I'm in a position that everyone prays for

Last year, Kyle Snyder photos brought good luck. I’m going for that again today! Photo by Kelly O’Connor/sittingstill.net. Used with permission.

I initially wanted to try and “celebrate” my 100th post here at WEEI.com with a live blog. But since the 100th post came without my realizing at the time that it was the 100th post, I had to modify that plan. I figured I’d wait until 150 or 200 but the Red Sox had different ideas.

So, since today I am going to be home, I thought a 12:35pm game on a Wednesday was as good a time as any for my first live blog here. Hope folks think the same. Hey, most of you are stuck at work anyway, right?

(Before I go on, let me make one remark about the only baseball game I watched last night: The Buffalo Bisons finally won their second game this season and it was against the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre Yankees! Yes, the team with the 1-10 record beat the 11-0 team!! Kyle Snyder didn’t get into the game, but I was genuinely excited nonetheless. And it’s interesting to note that the Scranton/Wilkes-Barre television broadcast team are as arrogant as the YES team – complaining at one point about the Bisons having interlocking “NY” on their jerseys. I have news for you fellas, Buffalo is in NY as well. Hooray for the Bisons! They won 7-3!)

I’m still rather amazed they decided to schedule the game for 12:35pm. I realize doing the game on Thursday would have been inconvenient but the Sox are staying in town and the Twins are only flying to Cleveland. I don’t see how that would have been so terrible for Minnesota. I know a handful of people who had tickets for last night’s game and it seems only a small portion of them will be able to go to the game today. I sense we’ll see a lot of empty seats. Which gives me hope that something great is going to happen at the afternoon game today. It always seems that the big games, the ones that NESN loves to air over and over again, have a lot of empty seats at them. Those are the games everyone you know claims to have been at (“Of COURSE I stayed for the entire ‘Mothers Day Miracle’ Game!”) but the stands always tell a different story.

I’m going to use the “Cover It Live” program for the live blog which makes it easier for folks to follow along AND comment without the aggravation of having to refresh the page to see what new stuff has been written. Folks seemed to enjoy that when we did it last year for the World Series.

Depending on the game, I’ve found sometimes folks will be reading the live blog but not commenting. That’s cool. I know that’s what I do a lot of the time with other people’s live blogs. A lot of people actually seem to use my live blog to re-live the game, so to speak, after the fact. I’m good with that (actually, having been told that by quite a few readers, I think it’s pretty cool!). But in the event that I do get people to comment today, here’s a couple of things you should know about the blog:

* With the “Cover it Live” program, there will be a brief delay in posting (mere seconds) while I accept your comment. I’ll be on my own, so I’ll have to develop a rhythm for typing and accepting comments at the same time! I won’t be moderating the comments (everyone will be accepted) unless people jump in to stir the pot. This is supposed to be fun and I hope it is.

* If you’re looking for deep analysis this probably isn’t the live blog for you. But if you’re stuck at work or somewhere with Internet access but no television, I like to think my live blog will be an entertaining alternative to reading about the game on GameDay.

If you are so inclined, join me at 12:30pm today for the Twins/Sox live blog. Wakefield on the mound should help make it quite the interesting game!

(And I don’t usually do this, but today is the birthday of THREE people I care very much about so here goes: Happy Birthday to Dale, Crystal and Jill!!! Hope you all have a beautiful day and get two Red Sox wins on top of it!)

April 22, 2009 Posted by | 2009 | , , , , | Leave a comment